Headshot of John Chisholm

John Chisholm

Adjunct Scientist
Sharks, Fisheries Science and Emerging Technologies (FSET) Program

T: (508) 245-9512



M.S., Marine Biology, University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, 2003

B.S., Biology & Marine Biology, University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, 1992


John Chisholm joins the Anderson Cabot Center for Ocean Life with nearly 4 decades of experience as a fisherman and scientist. He has been documenting the occurrence of white sharks in the Atlantic since the late 1970’s and continues to add to his database by collecting both past and present sightings. John has also been able to identify over 500 individual white sharks, from Canada to Florida, by their natural markings. In addition to white sharks his research has focused on the natural history and conservation of other New England shark species including spiny dogfish, sand tiger, porbeagle and basking sharks. Currently his research focus is on the diversity and ecology of local sharks with special interest on using technology to better understand the migratory and predatory behavior of white sharks, the social behavior of basking sharks and range expansion of several species. Besides research, John also likes to raise awareness about sharks through outreach and social media.

  1. Select Publications

    Skomal GB, Zeeman SI, Chisholm JH, Summers EL, Walsh HJ, McMahon KW et al. (2009) Transequatorial migrations by basking sharks in the Western Atlantic Ocean. Curr Biol 19: 1019–1022.

    Skomal GB, Chisholm J, Correia SJ (2012) Implications of increasing pinniped populations on the diet and abundance of white sharks off the coast of Massachusetts. In: Domeier ML, editor. Global perspectives on the biology and life history of the great white shark. Boca Raton: CRC Press. pp. 405–417.

    Kneebone J, Chisholm J, Skomal GB (2012) Seasonal residency, habitat use, and site fidelity of juvenile sand tigers Carcharias taurus in a Massachusetts estuary. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 471:165–185

    Kneebone J, Chisholm J, Bernal D, Skomal GB (2013) The physiological effects of capture stress, recovery, and post-release survivorship of juvenile sand tigers (Carcharias taurus) caught on rod and reel. Fish Res 147:103–114

    Kneebone J, Chisholm J, Skomal G (2014) Movement patterns of juvenile sand tigers (Carcharias taurus) along the east coast of the USA. Mar Biol 161(5):1149–1163
    GB Skomal, CD Braun, JH Chisholm, SR Thorrold, (2017) Movements of the white shark Carcharodon carcharias in the North Atlantic Ocean, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 10.3354/meps12306, 580, (1-16).

    Kneebone J, Winton M, Danylchuk A, Chisholm J, Skomal GB (2018) An assessment of juvenile sand tiger (Carcharias taurus) activity patterns in a seasonal nursery using accelerometer transmitters. Environmental Biology Fishes:18p

    Queiroz, N., Humphries, N. E., Couto, A., Vedor, M., da Costa, I., Sequeira, A. M. M., … Sims, D. W. (2019). Global spatial risk assessment of sharks under the footprint of fisheries. Nature, 572, 461-466.

    Moxley JH, Skomal G, Chisholm J, Halpin P, Johnston DW (2020) Daily and seasonal movements of Cape Cod gray seals vary with predation risk. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 644:215-228.

  2. News